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Lea Meeting Future Of Funding


sadiesmith
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I am off to a meeting tonight with our local LEA about how we are going to get closer to the maintained sector in 2009/10 as regards NEG funding.

We are going to be asked for financial costs in running a private nursery. How do people feel about giving this sensitive and private information. Should it matter as they know how much it costs to run a maintained setting. I am in a dilhema. I am all for partnership working but feel why should I give very financial sensitive info to someone who has been in competition to me for the past few years.

Advice anyone?

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We have already had a meeting with our LEA. I believe the information they are gathering is to compare cost between different types of settinge i.e maintained, private, committees etc. so that at some point in the future a fairer funding system can be put in place. All the information we had to provide was kept confidential.

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Very interesting article in this months PLA Under 5's magazine on just this topic.

QUOTE

This is obviously sensitive information which some groups may be reluctant to give out to the local authority. However, it is vital that as many private and voluntary settings as possible complete this section if the government is to understand how much it really costs to provide the free entitlement........ Settings are permitteed to include a level of 'normal' profit or surplus within their costings, in order to reflect that it is often surpluses made in one year, (or part of the year) which sustains the groups in leaner periods at otheer times.

UNQUOTE

Hope this helps

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Before you worry too much about giving sensitive information, think about this..

If I was in your neighbourhood I could easily find out how much your fees are, I could take a pretty close estimate of your wages bill and even your other bills such as food, resources, office costs etc. just based on how many children you are registered for and how many I think you've got on the register each day.

If the information is to be confidential then I would give it in the hope that the person at the LEA who controls the purse strings decides to give you an increase or at least doesnt see the need to slash funding.

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I believe (or am I too trusting) they are going to use the info to ensure that we get fairer funding. In some settings the running costs are higher and the funding doesn't meet them while in others the funding more than covers the cost.

We are undergoing the same process at the moment and so far it looks quite positive I think...

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I agree with Rea, I have certainly done similar exercises with my local settings to find out what they are doing and also as an assignment for my marketing module. Its quite easy for anyone to find out how many children you have, what your fees are, approximatley what your wage bill is and then work it backwards - only element I couldn't really get a handle on was how much the rent/overhead cost is but I am sure this could be found out somehow. What about the accounts you have to produce - do these go to companies house or the charities commission. I don't think you should worry too much but there again it seems that you do not have to provide it but it would be good if your setting is not making mega amounts of money.

Nikki

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we have to send an annual statement of accounts to receive our funding.. in our area all settings do, so here they have the info every year. If we don't send it we don't get the funding.

 

Inge

Edited by Inge
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i've already done the questionaire and there was nothing on it that you couldn't find out or that the Auditors would know from looking at your accounts when you have them in. We can't expect to shout that the funding isn't enough if we don't back it up with figures. i'm private and the profit i make is my wages and its certainly not enough that I would be worried about showing how much it is infact it shows that I'm not making enough!!!!!!

You don't have to show accounts and can quite easily show just the basics. The questtionaire only asked for information it is all confidential and only a couple of people in our Borough know the allocations numbers that we are given.

I know some of our nurseries are shuddering but most of the pre-schools have done it without problems. if you have children under3's that don't get funding then they are not asking for that information. Its only about the 3/4 yr olds and if you receive grant money then that information must be available as its government public funds.

 

I've been to all our local forums and committee's and I'm now possibly going to be the rep on the Schools Forum. Went to the first Schools Forum last night and apart from adding a few noughts to all the figures it was very interesting. quite fun watching grown adults having to ask the chair if they could speak and waving their little pieces of paper around to vote when a show of hands was required. Whole new world.

 

Steph

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I have raised our concerns with the NDNA and they will hold a meeting next thursday and they will get back on Friday.

Look at the Hedera website. It states that the govt believe we are receiving adequate funding for 3 and 4 years and the younger children places are being subsidised by the NEG. They want us to break down the actual numbers of children we have. The bigger your costs the more funding will be allocated using a FORMULA agreed at local level. We will be penalised for operating a profit making business.

The bigger your setting and the more money it spends on wages and advertising for example you will allocated the NEG in apportionment. Please be careful of what we are doing here. as people have said before me the LEA know our registeration figures and can find out our costs so why do they need our outgoings. Surely it can be worked out so WHY?????

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I can understand concern that Private businesses are giving what has until now been 'private' information. The moment a 'private' ( or charitable or other structured ) business receives government funding, along with that fundings 'performance' criteria, they reduce their 'private' status. Of course if we receive funding it should be accountable for. I suppose some may argue that if you want finances to remain 'private' then don't accept the funding. The problem with this is that we are unable to have this choice because of 'market forces', Government competition.

 

Basically the whole funding issue was never thought out properly on it's outset, from way back to the Voucher system, to the present day.

 

It would be nice to be able to believe tha the government and local Authorities are now trying to redress issues that have occured, ie: a level playing field. They need the information to be able to do this. For example I have recently been phoning other local providers to find places for my children at preschool ( because I am closing at the end of term).

 

I personally pay £2,500 per term rent, a setting, operating the same hours as me, receiving the same NEG funding as me pays £1,900 PER MONTH rent, another setting pays £ 500 per term. We are all within a 5 mile radius of each other.

 

The local childrens centre nursery has totally different running costs, including the requirement to employ a qualified teacher.

 

It is these variations that need to be considered by government to then be able to work out the most fair, best system for all providers when it comes to funding the children attending.

 

Admin costs are another area of discrpency when considering costs. plus many more varients.

 

We unfortunately have a lack of trust, ( this topic shows that), we feel 'owned', even employed in a sense, by the government, rather than being self sufficient, self employed providers etc etc. We feel in a no win situation, and powerless, with limited 'business' choices.

 

We can't survive without the funding ( competition from 'free' other providers )

We can't survive with the funding, unsustainable.

We can't be valued for our individual services because we operate to 'others' criteria, and we can't be 'unique' with 'unique' selling points because we are 'owned' by the government and are unable to charge for 'uniqueness'. (sp?)

 

In the present climate, we do need to give what information we feel will 'inform' fair decisions, without this information we cannot argue our case and will become more and more unsustainable.

 

Peggy

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Peggy, my rent is at the lower end of the spectrum but the LEA based our funding on what our overheads actually are, therefore all settings are banded. This seems fair or am I being naive????

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Peggy, my rent is at the lower end of the spectrum but the LEA based our funding on what our overheads actually are, therefore all settings are banded. This seems fair or am I being naive????

 

 

If all your local settings are banded does that mean that some settings in a higher overheads banding get more funding than you do???

 

Peggy

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If all your local settings are banded does that mean that some settings in a higher overheads banding get more funding than you do???

 

Peggy

I guess this would suggest that settings who have good financial management/control would be penalised for keeping their overheads low...

 

Maz

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My rent has gone up this term, and will be going up each year for the next 3 years. this term i'm paying £1400 for 6 hours a day. I pay £14,000 year. In 3 years time i will be paying £22,000+ per year. I could actually rent larger office space or an industrial unit for more hours at less cost, but our Borough planning won't let me get a change of use.

I won't be able to survive if I have to pay that sort of rent. Unless the government understand these sort of costs, we can't ask for more in our grant money. I'm now on the Schools Forum so will hopefully be able to make the Schools and Govenors understand the differnece and how difficult it is for some of us.

Steph

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